This week the Buzz is building, buying, opening and discovering help for dry hands.

There’s mashed bananas involved for the latter, so we’ll circle back.

Up first: Luke Livingston’s moved from Baxter to Brickyard.

Brickyard Collective founders Whit Richardson, left, Luke Livingston and Jacob Eslinger. Submitted photo

The Auburn native who founded Baxter Brewing Co. and retired from there last fall has formed the new consulting firm Brickyard Collective with former journalist Whit Richardson and Jacob Eslinger, former marketing director of The Holy Donut.

The trio describe the collective, which will be based out of office space in downtown Portland, as “a new business growth firm designed to help forward-looking, innovative companies — from startups to mature businesses — develop and implement successful communications, sales, marketing and go-to-market strategies.”

And no, the plan wasn’t to launch during a pandemic.

“It may seem like a crazy time to start a business, but I think businesses will be looking for creative solutions to some of the challenges they’ll be facing,” Livingston said Tuesday. “With our combined expertise and complementary skill sets, I’m confident we can help.”

From building brands to just plain building

Among the building permits coming out of the Auburn code office last month: one for Kassbohrer All Terrain Vehicles and one for GFI Auburn Plaza Realty LLC.

Kassbohrer built a 40-foot-by-120-foot three-sided shed at 87 Kassbohrer Way for cold equipment storage, Regional Manager Jim Bear said Tuesday. The $300,000 project is already finished.

The Auburn Plaza work at 730 Center St. involves a $225,741 renovation at Curaleaf Maine, the medical marijuana dispensary formerly known as Remedy Compassion Center.

“We have plans in the works, but nothing specific at this time,” said President Scott Reed. “We’ve been part of the community going on 10 years and looking forward to many more.”

Now about those bananas

The Lewiston-based Farmers’ Almanac has seen an uptick in sales the last three weeks as more people have sought it out for planting, weather and other practical advice, according to Editor Peter Geiger.

“Traffic is at an all-time high with people going to our gardening calendar, moon information, homemade fertilizers, fishing calendar and even frost dates,” he said. “I have read about record sale for seeds and the next step is advice on what and how to do it. The throw-away society is being replaced by doing things like our grandparents — more with less.”

Among the random who-knews in the Almanac: ways to help the skin on your hands that’s dried out from washing and washing and washing and then sanitizing.

Tips and suggestions include leaving mashed bananas, avocado oil or potatoes soaked in olive oil on your skin.

Really, who knew?

Ending on a heart-warmer

Last week, the Lewiston Auburn Metropolitan Chamber asked members if any could pitch in on buying five laptops for adult learners whose construction program through Lewiston Adult Education had come to an abrupt halt.

“With libraries closed, some adult learners didn’t have the proper tech needed to continue their learning,” said Meredith Carson, the chamber’s marketing and communications director.

In less than 48 hours, The Computer Place had hooked them up with a discount and installed the needed software. State Rep. Kristen Cloutier, Denny Bourgoin, Lewiston Councilor Alicia Rea, Recovery Connections of Maine, Steven Johndro of Androvise Realty and one anonymous sponsor covered the $1,000 cost.

The learners were back in the learning business and, hopefully, building something soon.

The laptops will be reused by Lewiston Adult Education in future classes, Carson said.

Nice when a plan so quickly comes together.

Quick hits about business comings, goings and happenings. Have a Buzzable tip? Contact staff writer Kathryn Skelton at 689-2844 or [email protected]


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